Where we stayed? At Maha Guesthouse. Surrounded by a sea of flowers and greenery it was the first guesthouse that opened, in 2010. But the season was ruined by the horrible mudslide in Leh that year and serious flooding in the Shyok Valley. The super friendly and most helpful owner speaks English really well and cooks delicious food. No wonder his 10 rooms (800 to 1.000 Rupees) are full every day. The increasing number of tourists has tempted several of his neighbors to open a guesthouse as well and we spotted several homestays.
The only flaw in this paradise was a group of nine (!) Israeli backpackers and a loud-mouthed Dutch guy who invaded that tiny guesthouse with the usual commotion that such a group of young people brings along. Although it is only the third season for the village to welcome tourists, young Israelis have managed to live up to the reputation they have gained all over the world.
So our recommendation for trips to the Nubra Valley: by all means avoid the 2 day tours! You will be sitting in the car all day and not even reach the Shyok Valley. If you decide to continue all the way to Turtuk, take 4 days. Most agencies suggest 3 days, knowing that everybody is in a rush. This way you can stay in one place for two nights. We were so upset with the loud group of Israeli that we drove back to Diskit and spent the night there. This has also the advantage that your drive back to Leh is a lot shorter already.
Some may find it irritating to be somewhere having only 3 hours of electricity, without Internet & facebook access, without anything that usually defines our daily life back home. What you get in return is a picturesque village, lots of nature, friendly people, great hiking possibilities… A very relaxing experience in a unique setting!
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